The much anticipated 2020 general election is done and dusted and as the next parliament could be without a clear majority, one thing is certain; the jubilee house will be occupied by the President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo who was also the flag bearer of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP). The election which was conducted in a generally peaceful environment gave the president over 51% of total valid votes with his closest contender, His excellency John Dramani Mahama pulling a little over 47% of valid votes according to the electoral commission of Ghana.
The declaration of results by Madam Jean Mensah, the chairperson of the electoral commission on the 9th of December 2020 was met with mixed reactions across the country. Some people hit the streets to jubilate while others picket at strategic locations to either lament or point accusing fingers at officials and authorities as a way of registering their disappointment.
Some people may be happy while others are sad but the truth is that Ghana’s political landscape has experienced a lot of change since the country’s return to civilian rule in 1992. Therefore every serious political party must embrace this wind of change and dance to it. The New Patriotic Party’s dramatic loss of their precious “parliamentary majority”, John Peter Amewu’s magnificent conquest of the Hohoe parliamentary seat in the political stronghold of the opposition National Democratic congress (NDC) and Akufo Addo’s second nod in an election that he could easily have lost, all go a long way to reemphasize the fact that the Ghanaian people are very discerning and are beginning to vote not along party lines but on issues of national development. Since Ghana’s democracy has never experienced a phase as critical as the one the country is being ushered into, what then must a political party do to stay in power for a relatively longer period?
The New Patriotic Party at this point despite being subjected to a woeful loss of a significant amount of credibility, still stand a very good chance of keeping the National Democratic Congress in opposition for a very long time. This is due to a variety of reasons as listed bellow. The NPP has a good number of “president materials” and the party has done well at projecting them. The very first and most glaring among them is Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, followed by the likes of honorable Oppong Nkrumah, honorable Mustapha Hamid and honorable John Peter Amewu. In spite of having all these “president materials”, the New Patriotic Party’s fate going into 2024 and beyond hangs largely on the very neck of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo’s performance and most importantly his decisions regarding the leadership of the party towards the future. Some social media pundits are already calling for a “Bawumia and John Peter Amewu” or “Bawumia and Alan Kyeremanteng” ticket for 2024. However, any such error will result in the utmost humiliation of the New Patriotic Party at the Polls come December 2024.
Firstly, the NPP must aim at continuing the perfect infiltration of the Volta region; the political stronghold of their bitterest political rivals, the NDC. Since honorable John Peter Amewu’s conquest of the Hohoe parliamentary seat remains the best mark of the NPP in the Volta region since the beginning of the fourth republic, the party must endeavour to keep the minister of energy there in order to make the seat a safe seat for the NPP. This will make honorable John Peter Amewu unavailable for nomination as a presidential candidate or for appointment as a running mate during the 2024 presidential race.
Secondly, a post Akufo Addo era will be characterized by divisions within the New Patriotic Party along Bawumia and Alan Kyeremanteng lines if care is not taken. This is where the real headache is and without the right remedy, this may go a long way to hurt the party at the polls come 2024. In order to avoid the occurrence of this glaring possibility therefore, the president Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo must take a bold step. He must make a decision similar to what Nelson Mandela did to make it safe for black South Africans to rise to the high office of President following the unspeakably horrifying years of apartheid in the mineral rich country even long after his retirement and subsequent death. The president of the republic of Ghana; Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo must tender in his resignation from the high office of president, leaving Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia as the president of Ghana. The NPP must however considering clauses (6) and (7) of article 60 of the constitution of Ghana which states that:
“(6) Whenever the President dies, resigns or is removed from office, the Vice-President shall assume office as President for the unexpired term of office of the President with effect from the date of the death, resignation or removal of the President.
(7) Where the unexpired term served by the Vice-President under clause (6) of this article exceeds half the term of a President, the Vice-President is subsequently only eligible to serve one full term as President.”
It will therefore be catastrophic for Dr. Bawumia’s political career should Nana Addo resign before 2022. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo must therefore resign from office after January 2022 after which Dr. Bawumia as president and for the purpose of continuation must appoint honorable Oppong Nkrumah as his vice president for the remainder of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo’s term.
After the expiration of Nana Addo’s term however, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia as an act of respect for order must step down for honorable Alan Kyeremanteng to go unopposed as the flag bearer of the New Patriotic Party with honorable Oppong Nkrumah retained as Alan’s running mate. With this team and this tactics, the New Patriotic Party is not only assured of victory in 2024 and 2028 but also in 2032 as Dr. Bawumia will be eligible to run for president and could then summon the companionship of honorable John Peter Amewu. Honorable Peter Amewu may have succeeded in infiltrating the Volta region and bringing down the political defenses of the National Democratic Congress within the region by then.
The New Patriotic Party may however need a little bit of help from the NDC for this plan to work. The former must pray for the later to retain their current flag bearer; His Excellency John Dramani Mahama come 2024 instead of introducing the likes of Professor Joshua Alabi, Goosie Tanoh, Alban Bagbin and the estranged Koku Anyidoho. “Ceteris Paribus” this single step by President Nana Addo can set in motion a pattern that will make the New Patriotic Party indomitable within the political space of the gold and oil rich West African country.
Do you think the NPP can keep the NDC in opposition for more than 20 years? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.
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